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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2017

    Default Problems, Disability, Our Rights in Apartment Community

    My question involves landlord-tenant law in the State of: Texas

    This is long but, please bear with me. I am renting an apartment since December 2017. It is a new gov't subsidized apartment community. I reside here with my disabled autistic daughter and 12 year old son. I am also disabled. Last August, someone tried to use a knife to break into my bedroom window. The police came and gathered fingerprints. I have called numerous times to get information about my case. I never received a call back. There were two detectives on the case. I had called both with no response. I also left messages for the sergeant. I am calling again tomorrow. The phone protocol is ridiculous. It is impossible to get a person on the line.

    At this same time, I went into the office and filled out a work order to have my air filter replaced. On the order, I explicitly mentioned to call me first. I have to be home during any maintenance. My 21 year old autistic daughter is home and will have an episode. I also don't want anyone entering my home when I am not here. I went to the store right up the street for 20 minutes and got a notification on my phone that the work order was complete. The maintenance came in when she was home alone regardless. We were very upset. Thankfully she was in her room with the door locked. Two weeks ago, I was sitting at my dining table and my door handle was tried and door pushed and someone tried to come in. I went to the peephole, and saw the one maintenance man grumbling and walking away. There are two maintenance men. He didn't knock, announce himself, or even use a key. I immediately went to the peephole and identified the person. I have two locks. One from inside and one from outside. I called the police and they told me that I should let the maintenance man know, " I am not interested." I was floored. What is this cop thinking? So the cop recommended that I approach this guy that tried to break into my home. I don't know the guy. The maintenance men wave to people and that is it. They do this to all residents driving by if they are standing outside their maintenance door which is right next to the office. The cop said to call the office and let them know. I did this and no one was there this day.

    It was a staff meeting day. So, why this guy was coming to our door is bizarre. He did not follow maintenance protocol. I immediately sent an email to the office manager. I did not get a response for a few days. I sent a second email. Finally, 14 days later, I received a response. The manager told me, she called the maintenance man into the office and asked him about it. She told me, "He had a work order at a neighbor's apartment and had the wrong apartment."

    He is supposed to follow protocol (announce himself or at least knock.) I have called the local tenant's association for help. They said it is a fair housing issue since we are disabled. They said they could help with communication and preventing them from entering via a letter to the manager. Another thing that happened this past Friday is a faulty oven that caught fire. I put a pizza in the oven and pushed the "Keep Warm" button. The button was on "keep warm" and the broiler lit. It started the pizza on fire. I pulled it out and burnt my thumb in the process. I unplugged the oven and I quickly extinguished the flame, but the apartment manager was supposed to put in a work order for fire safety "bumpers" to be installed on our oven. They never did this. The oven was making strange noises like it had a short prior to unplugging it.
    I wanted to ask for opinions on how to handle this prior to calling the office on Monday morning. I greatly appreciate any advice.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2019

    Default Re: Problems, Disability, Our Rights in Apartment Community

    What are "fire safety bumpers"?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2017

    Default Re: Problems, Disability, Our Rights in Apartment Community

    I do not know specifically. It is a part that goes to the range hood underneath. This is what the maintenance people told me needed to be installed.

    I guess no one wants to touch my post with a ten foot pole. Thanks anyway.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Behind a Desk

    Default Re: Problems, Disability, Our Rights in Apartment Community

    It's not clear what you hope to accomplish.

    Can you stop a maintenance man from knocking on your door by mistake? No, stupid mistakes happen.

    Do you have some sort of cause of action or reason to violate your lease when a maintenance man performs work that you requested when you're not home, even if you requested that it only occur when you're at home, based upon something that theoretically might have happened but did not actually happen? No, you do not.

    Does the fire in your oven have something to do with safety bumpers? We have know way of knowing. Is the burn on your thumb serious? You haven't told us.

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